Travel cover is a must, even for a 'staycation'

Holidaying in the UK can save money, but be careful not to scrimp on insurance

The 12 million Britons hoping to cut costs by holidaying at home this summer could find themselves out of pocket if they haven't taken out the right travel cover, insurers warned last week.

With the economy still lagging and the pound struggling, many of us are sacrificing a holiday overseas, to save money. But those opting for a "staycation" face the same risks as they would abroad. A domestic flight, say, can be as easily cancelled or delayed as an international flight, and UK holidaymakers are similarly vulnerable to theft or damage to belongings.

"Many Brits may not even consider taking out travel insurance. However, it may be worth considering, especially if they are flying within the UK or taking expensive possessions with them," says Maxine Baker, the manager of travel insurance at Moneysupermarket.com.

Two in five Britons say they are taking their main holiday in the UK this year because of financial concerns, according to insurers Liverpool Victoria. "It's not surprising that holidaymakers are thinking twice about spending their hard-earned wages on expensive overseas holidays. However, UK holidaymakers should remember that travel insurance is still important," says John O'Roarke, the managing director of LV's travel insurance.

According to claims data from insurer AXA, cancellation, baggage and curtailment (cutting a holiday short) are the most common claims made on domestic holidays. Cancellation accounts for half of all AXA's claims, with the average amount claimed being £396. Damage to baggage is next in line with claims averaging at £183, while curtailment claims come in at £339.

But there could be other issues. Anyone travelling to the Channel Islands, for example, will not be covered for medical treatment by their European Heath Insurance Card (EHIC) or the NHS, so falling ill could be costly without medical cover. There could also be the cost of getting home. AXA warns that while medical treatment will be covered by the NHS in the UK, actually getting home will come out of your own pocket if you haven't declared medical conditions to your insurer.

Those taking a caravanning break should ensure they get proper caravan cover as well as car insurance and travel cover, advises Alison Patrick, the head of travel at AXA. "Travel policies will not cover you for damage or theft of the caravan, but will cover you for possessions in the vehicle," she says.

There is also the worry that your holiday firm, like 50 others in the past 12 months, will go bust, according to AA Travel Insurance. Package holidays should be covered by Atol, but the many holidaymakers who prefer to book flights and hotels separately are vulnerable without comprehensive cover. To compensate for the increased danger, AA's travel insurance automatically includes protection against the insolvency of any travel or accommodation supplier, up to £5,000 per person.

"Many travellers believe they are fully protected through their insurance, credit card or travel compensation schemes. But cover is often incomplete and patchy," says Christian Young, the chief executive of AA Travel Insurance.

Despite the pitfalls, almost half of those questioned in a recent survey by comparison site Moneysupermarket.com revealed they would not insure themselves for a holiday in Britain. But insurance for UK breaks is, in the main, reasonably priced. A single-trip policy with OUL Direct costs just £10.29 for a family of four for one week and includes £1,500 cover for baggage, £3,000 for cancellation and £5m for medical expenses. Annual policies can be taken out for around £30, again for a family of four, which will usually work out cheaper if you plan to make more than two trips per year. TopDog offers its Emerald Annual Multi-Trip policy for £32.80 and covers for loss of baggage up to £1,000, cancellation of holiday up to £750 and medical expenses up to £10m.

There are several ways to reduce costs on travel insurance for home and abroad. First, check existing annual policies, as many include UK cover. Conditions vary, so check the fine print for inclusions and exclusions. Campers, say, might have to inform their insurers in advance as their policies will need to reflect the increased risk to possessions. It may be worth taking out specialist insurance. E&L offers standalone cover from £16 per year and covers camping equipment valued up to £10,000.

Holidaymakers should also check their home insurance policies as they may cover belongings outside the home, and premium current account holders who pay a monthly fee may find they have travel insurance as a benefit. Again, check the terms. When buying a policy, it is almost always cheaper to buy directly from the insurer rather than from a tour operator or travel agent.

Suggested Topics
News
More than 90 years of car history are coming to an end with the abolition of the paper car-tax disc
newsThis and other facts you never knew about the paper circle - completely obsolete tomorrow
News
Kim Jong Un gives field guidance during his inspection of the Korean People's Army (KPA) Naval Unit 167
newsSouth Korean reports suggest rumours of a coup were unfounded
Arts and Entertainment
You could be in the Glastonbury crowd next summer if you follow our tips for bagging tickets this week
music
Life and Style
It is believed that historically rising rates of alcohol consumption have contributed to the increase
food + drink
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people
News
Piers Morgan tells Scots they might not have to suffer living on the same island as him if they vote ‘No’ to Scottish Independence
peopleBroadcaster has a new role bringing 'the big stories that matter' to US
Arts and Entertainment
Kylie performs during her Kiss Me Once tour
musicReview: 26 years on from her first single, the pop princess tries just a bit too hard at London's O2
Life and Style
Moves to regulate e-cigarettes and similar products as medicines come amid increasing evidence of their effectiveness
healthHuge anti-smoking campaign kicks off on Wednesday
Life and Style
fashionEveryone, apparently
Voices
The erotic novel Fifty Shades of Grey has already been blamed for a rise in the number of callouts to the fire brigade for people trapped in handcuffs
voicesJustine Elyot: Since Fifty Shades there's no need to be secretive about it — everyone's at it
Arts and Entertainment
A new Banksy entitled 'Art Buff' has appeared in Folkestone, Kent
art
Arts and Entertainment
Shia LaBeouf is one of Brad Pitt's favourite actors in the world ever, apparently
filmsAn 'eccentric' choice, certainly
Life and Style
An Internet security expert has warned that voice recognition technology needs to be more secure
techExperts warn hackers could control our homes or spend our money simply by speaking
Extras
indybest
News
peopleBenjamin Netanyahu trolled by group promoting two-state solution
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Birmingham - Real Staffing

    £18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Real Staffing are currently lo...

    Trust Accountant - Kent

    NEGOTIABLE: Austen Lloyd: TRUST ACCOUNTANT - KENTIf you are a Chartered Accou...

    Graduate Recruitment Consultant - 2013/14 Grads - No Exp Needed

    £18000 - £20000 per annum + OTE £30000: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250 b...

    Law Costs

    Highly Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: CITY - Law Costs Draftsperson - NICHE...

    Day In a Page

    Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

    Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

    and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
    Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

    Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

    The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
    Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

    Last chance to see...

    The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
    So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

    Truth behind teens' grumpiness

    Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
    Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

    Hacked photos: the third wave

    Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?
    Royal Ballet star dubbed 'Charlize Theron in pointe shoes' takes on Manon

    Homegrown ballerina is on the rise

    Royal Ballet star Melissa Hamilton is about to tackle the role of Manon
    Education, eduction, education? Our growing fascination with what really goes on in school

    Education, education, education

    TV documentaries filmed in classrooms are now a genre in their own right
    It’s reasonable to negotiate with the likes of Isis, so why don’t we do it and save lives?

    It’s perfectly reasonable to negotiate with villains like Isis

    So why don’t we do it and save some lives?
    This man just ran a marathon in under 2 hours 3 minutes. Is a 2-hour race in sight?

    Is a sub-2-hour race now within sight?

    Dennis Kimetto breaks marathon record
    We shall not be moved, say Stratford's single parents fighting eviction

    Inside the E15 'occupation'

    We shall not be moved, say Stratford single parents
    Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

    Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

    Talks between all touched by the crisis in Syria and Iraq can achieve as much as the Tornadoes, says Patrick Cockburn
    Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

    Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

    The Tory MP speaks for the first time about the devastating effect of his father's bankruptcy
    Witches: A history of misogyny

    Witches: A history of misogyny

    The sexist abuse that haunts modern life is nothing new: women have been 'trolled' in art for 500 years
    Shona Rhimes interview: Meet the most powerful woman in US television

    Meet the most powerful woman in US television

    Writer and producer of shows like Grey's Anatomy, Shonda Rhimes now has her own evening of primetime TV – but she’s taking it in her stride
    'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

    Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

    Jimmy Nelson travelled the world to photograph 35 threatened tribes in an unashamedly glamorous style